Local stars hit big time
Local actors Rapulana Seiphemo and Kenneth Nkosi's debut feature film, White Wedding, is set to make the two artists millionaires.
Just over this past weekend, after its opening night, it has hit records for attendances and box office earnings.
The film grossed more than R1,1million at the box office when it was released on circuit this weekend, and these results are in line with the opening weekend performance of the smash hit Slumdog Millionaire's gross earnings in March this year.
White Wedding has been seen by 48000 people since its release on Wednesday April 29, and has in fact outperformed X-men Origins: Wolverine at cinemas such as Ster-Kinekor Maponya Mall, Sterland, Savannah Mall, Southgate and The Wheel.
"We have watched every kind of local audience watching our movie, and what every screening has had in common are the smiles on people's faces when they leave the theatres," said director Jann Turner.
"I am elated with the way South African audiences have received the film.".
Writer-producer-actor Nkosi is also elated.
"South Africans are sending us a message. They want to see themselves and laugh at themselves on the big screen."
White Wedding sold three times more tickets than the hit gangster movie Jerusalema (which ironically featured Nkosi and Rapulana) did on its opening weekend, and twice as many as Academy Award winner Tsotsi at the time of its release.
Nkosi and Rapulana have starred or featured in many successful local feature films including Max and Mona, Hijack Stories, Jerusalema and Tsotsi . As a result, they have built a big screen fan-base over the years.
White Wedding's successes illustrate that local star power can bring people to cinemas in equal or bigger numbers than US star-driven films do.
The film stars Nkosi and Rapulana who also co-wrote an co-produced the play with director Jann Turner.